Photo: Tareni Colliery c1930


Peacock Seam, Red Vein and Big Vein were all coals mined in the Swansea Valley by The Tareni Colliery Coal Company.

Read about the history of Tareni Colliery and of the company that sank the pits to reach the fabulous anthracite coals that lay up to one thousand feet beneath Mynydd Marchywel and Mynydd Alltygrug. Tareni Colliery publication, 288 pages, 150,000 words, 190 images, and thirty interviews is the story of 100 years of coalmining in the mid Swansea Valley area and of the people who worked in the pits sunk by the company.

The story of Tareni Colliery is much more than the history of one coalmine. This publication is the history of the company that sank those mines, The South Wales Primrose Coal Company Ltd, and of its foundation in the 1850s from the original Primrose Colliery at Rhos and of its sinking new pits and opening new drift mines in the search for high quality anthracite coals in the badly faulted and geologically disturbed region of the mid Swansea Valley area.

This is also the story of the miners who cut the coals, of the hauliers who brought the coals to the surface, of the men who operated the washeries to clean and grade the coals, the blacksmiths who maintained the equipment at the mines, and of many other colliery workers who contributed to the operations in winning the coals, but also of the miners’ families, the people who made the communities of Godre’r Graig, Rhos, Cilmaengwyn, Ystalyfera, Pant-teg and the many other villages and towns of the Swansea Valley coalfield. Follow the miners’ trails of The South Wales Primrose Coal Company and of The Tareni Colliery Company in this fascinating publication.

South Wales Coals (Swansea District) Anthracite

  • Anthracite small
  • Anthracite Rubbly Culm
  • Anthracite Billy Duff
  • Anthracite Screened Cobbles
  • Anthracite Nuts
  • Anthracite Beans
  • Anthracite Stove-Nuts
  • Anthracite Peas
  • Anthracite Red Vein coal suitable for central heating, lime burning, carbide manufacture and horticultural purposes.
  • Anthracite Big Vein coals suitable for malting hops to produce beer.

Composition of the coals: Ash four to six percent, volatile matter six to eight percent, and calories 7,900 to 8,150. Fixed carbon content eighty-six and a half percent, water two percent.

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